Teen attacked his first time surfing with bracelet that was supposed to repel sharks.
A teenager in Florida is recovering from a shark bite he suffered his first time out surfing with a product that was supposed to keep them away last Tuesday.
Zack Davis had to get 44 stitches in his arm after he was hit by a shark, believed to be a black tip, on North Hutchinson Island. Hear him speak about his encounter below.
This incident is drawing a lot of attention for the shark repellent device Davis was wearing at the time of the bite.
“It is a shark band and it was supposed to keep sharks away and the first time I wore it, and I go surfing a lot, but the first time I wore it – I get bit,” the teen told reporters.
Davis’ mom is hoping to get the $80 back for the device.
Apparently this isn’t the first time someone has questioned the effectiveness of the technology. In the aftermath of the attack, people began peppering the company’s social media channels with tough questions. At least one person who commented on the company’s Facebook page pointed out this test video of one of the bands in Australia.
The company’s co-founder has since responded through media and in a statement on their Facebook page, said they believed it was a rare set of circumstances that could not have been avoided, shark repellent or not.
On Thursday, December 29, I spoke with Zack, who believes that the encounter and bite were a case of rare bad luck. He remarked that the shark was most likely and accidentally provoked when he [Zack] jumped off his board into the water and landed nearby, placing his hand on the sand as he was getting rolled by the wave.
Our scientific partners and shark researchers at SharkDefense Technologies have concurred with this self-defense assessment of the shark’s behavior. Managing Partner and Sr. Chemist of SharkDefense Technologies, Dr. Eric Stroud, a leading expert on magnetic shark deterrent technologies, noted, “If the surfer did land on top of the shark or very close to it, the shark would have likely acted defensively to this. While accidental and certainly unlucky, this is essentially a provoked attack from the shark’s perspective. If the animal was cornered relative to the shore, the surfer’s body, and physical contact occurred near the shark’s head, the shark acted as expected. In a provoked attack situation, shark repellents are no longer effective.”
Additionally, Dr. Stroud believes that the Sharkbanz being worn on the opposite wrist could have been the very reason the shark let go of Zack’s affected arm so quickly and fled the scene. “Such types of encounters are very rare; this attack was certainly a very unique chain of events. Sharkbanz were designed to reduce unprovoked investigatory bites of the ankles, calves, and feet, which is the most common bite site for the United States. I believe that permanent magnet technologies and Sharkbanz remain effective for these situations.”
You can read the rest of the statement by Sharkbanz co-founder Nathan Garrison on their Facebook page. What do you think? Would you trust this product to protect you from an attack?